Of Flight, Fraud, and Freedom: Achebe’s Political Tricksters

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The trickster’s role in West African and other postcolonial literatures exemplifies the integration of traditional storytelling elements to affirm a culture’s values without severing those values from European influences. Modern fictional tricksters, including Achebe’s, play a role in recovering dimensions of culture that were nearly extinguished by colonization or reshaped by colonial priorities. In shedding light, moreover, on dilemmas posed by colonial and postcolonial societies—such as, in Achebe’s work, the misappropriation of power and the corrupt practices of post-independence rulers—tricksters demonstrate the relevance to modern literature of traditional narrative motifs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAfrican Histories and Modernities
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages36
StatePublished - 2017

Publication series

NameAfrican Histories and Modernities
ISSN (Print)2634-5773
ISSN (Electronic)2634-5781

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • History
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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